NBA.com Daily Confidential

Following a disappointing loss, the Los Angeles Lakers look to get back on track and end their three-game road trip on a positive note when they visit the New Orleans Hornets at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City on Saturday.

The Lakers (26-14) have been dominant at home, posting the second-most wins in the league there this season. Playing away from home, though, has not been as kind to Los Angeles as it is just 8-10 and allowing the fifth-most points on the road at 105.6 per game.

The Lakers opened a three-game road trip with an impressive 100-96 win over San Antonio on Wednesday, but looked erratic in a 114-95 loss to Dallas on Thursday.

Los Angeles trailed by as many as 28 points, and was outrebounded 53-28.

"What's disheartening is that they out hustled us a little bit and wanted it more,'' said Kobe Bryant, who had 26 points against the Mavericks. "You never want to lose games like that. It's fine to battle and just get beat, it happens, but to lose like that is what hurts.

"It's disappointing, but we have to get over it quickly. We have a game on Saturday and the rest of the season to look forward to and improve.''

Bryant is averaging 34.2 points in his last six road games, but the Lakers have won just two of those contests allowing 116.8 points in those games.

Luke Walton had just eight points on 3-of-9 shooting against the Mavericks, as his shooting woes continue. The fourth-year pro is averaging 8.5 points on 35.0 percent shooting and has missed all 10 of his 3-point attempts in his last six games. He averaged 15.0 points on 55.6 percent shooting and made 6-of-12 3s in his six previous games.

Bryant has also had trouble finding his shooting touch lately, as he's averaging 24.0 points in his last eight games after scoring 29.1 ppg in his first 29 this season. The eight-time All-Star scored 24 points in Los Angeles' 105-89 loss to the Hornets (15-23) on Dec. 6, as the Lakers shot a season-low 15.8 percent (3-of-19) from 3-point range.

Los Angeles scored 34 points in the first period of that game, but was unable to score more than 19 points in any of the following three quarters.

The Lakers still have won seven of their last nine games over the Hornets, and Bryant is averaging 32.8 points in his last five games against them.

New Orleans lost to San Antonio 99-86 on Friday, snapping its three-game winning streak. The Hornets scored just 12 first-quarter points and trailed by 17 at halftime.

The Hornets did get solid contributions from David West and Bobby Jackson. West, in his first game after being out the last 30 with an elbow injury, scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, while Jackson, who had missed 21 of 22 games with cracked ribs, had 14 points.

"It's good to see we have a couple of other weapons out there. Both of those guys played real well,'' New Orleans coach Byron Scottsaid of West and Jackson. "We need to get those guys out there because we ran some sets and they were like, they didn't remember it. That's going to take a little time.''

The Hornets have not won consecutive games over the Lakers in a single season since March 24-April 2, 1996.


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